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Quilling Valentines: Tools and Making Shapes

Quilling paper comes in a variety of colors and widths; most of our projects can be made with standard precut strips. If you prefer, use a paper cutter and medium-weight paper, such as vellum or stationery, to make your own; construction paper is too heavy and will not roll easily.

Photography: Gentl and Hyers

Source: Martha Stewart Living, February 2002


Don't let the elaborate effects fool you: Quilling is simple. You need only a few basic craft items.


  • A round-headed pin is useful for precise glue application.

  • A slotted quilling tool lets you create coiled shapes with ease.

  • Fine-pointed tweezers are essential for tiny shapes.

  • Use small sharp scissors to cut fringe.


  1. Slip paper into the slot on the quilling tool, placing paper’s end flush with edge of slot. Turn tool until strip is rolled into a firm cylinder. Remove paper from tool, and glue closed.


    Create a tight circle, but do not glue. Instead, lay it on a flat surface, and let it expand. When satisfied with the shape and size, glue the end of the strip to secure.



    Form a loose circle, but do not glue closed.


  4. Fashion and glue a loose circle; pinch each end.

  5. Create and glue a loose circle; pinch one end.

  6. Make several loose scrolls; position with unrolled ends pointing the same way. Curve each over rolled end of next scroll; glue.

  7. Fold a strip in half, and crease. Roll each end toward center.

  8. Crease paper at center; roll ends outward.

  9. Form an S shape by rolling one end toward center, and the other in the opposite direction.

  10. Roll both ends of a strip toward the center.

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